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News Shotgun 2/22

  • New Star Wars movie in development: A new Star Wars movie is in development from director JD Dillard, who has directed Sleight and Sweetheart, and Matt Owens, a writer for Luke Cage and Agents of SHIELD.  This movie is separate from the project Kevin Feige is working on and Rian Johnson’s potential trilogy.
  • RL Stine writing a Garbage Pail Kids book series: The legendary RL Stine is going to be writing a new series of books based on the Garbage Pail Kids.  Stine signed a three-book deal with the first book, Welcome to Smellville, coming in the fall.  The books will be aimed at middle-grades (or nostalgia-filled adults).
  • The Blacklist Renewed for Season 8: The ongoing saga of Raymond Reddington will continue on NBC for another season as NBC as renewed the show for its 8th season.  The show is currently on mid-season break and is returning on March 20th.  The series is a steady performer, especially with digital and delayed viewing and also stong on Netflix, where NBC made an exclusive deal with the streamer.
  • Eli Roth directing a Borderlands movie: Eli Roth is heading to Pandora (not the James Cameron version) for an adaptation of the popular Borderlands series.  Craig Mazin, who recently showran and wrote Chernobyl, is writing the script.  It’s not clear if it will be based on a specific game or if it will try to replicate the game’s signature art style.
  • Deadpool coming to Fortnite: The Merc with a Mouth is coming to Fortnite as the “secret skin” of Chapter 2 of Season 2.  On the main hub, you can find Deadpool’s bathroom and he has a computer with various challenges that will need to be completed for the chapter, which will presumably make his outfit unlocked if you complete them all.  Chapter 2 also just launched with spies/espionage theme that pits two rival factions against each other.
  • Orphan prequel in the works: Directed by Jaume Collet-Serra, Orphan came out in 2009 and told the story of Esther, a young girl who is revealed to be a murderous adult suffering from hypopituitarism, which causes her to appear not to age.  William Brent Bell, who directed The Boy and the apparently disastrous Brahms: The Boy II, is signed to direct a prequel to Orphan, although it seems unlikely that original star Isabelle Fuhrman will return as Esther, given that she’s aged over a decade since the original movie.
  • Grizzly II is finally completed: After almost 4 decades, the previously unfinished Grizzly II, the sequel to the “Jaws on Land” that was 1976’s Grizzly, has been completed and is now Grizzly II: Revenge.  Originally shot in 1982, the movie featured a now ridiculous cast that included George Clooney, Laura Dern, Charlie Sheen, Louise Fletcher, and John Rhys-Davies.  Principal photography was completed but the film ran out of money before they could complete special effects sequences with an animatronic grizzly bear.  The completed film is making the rounds at festivals and will hopefully be available on streaming or On Demand shortly.
  • The Skywalker Saga 4K collection coming soon: Now that the saga is complete, Disney is putting out a Skywalker Saga 4K box set at the end of next month.  On March 31st, all nine films are in the collection and all are on 4K UHD for the first time physically (the Disney+ versions of the movies stream in 4K).  Rogue One is also included and 4K, Blu-Ray and DVD versions of each movie are included in the set.
  • Nathan Fielder teams with the Safdie Brothers for Showtime series: Comedian Nathan Fielder is teaming with Uncut Gems directors the Safdie Brothers for a new Showtime series called The Curse.  The show is a comedy series where an alleged curse threatens the marriage of a couple who also star in an HGTV show called Flipanthropy.
  • Martin Scorsese’s next movie is Killers of the Flower Moon: Martin Scorsese is going right back to work after what might have been his magnum opus with The Irishman.  The legendary director’s next movie is Killers of the Flower Moon and is inspired by a true story where the Osage Nation discovered oil on their reservation in the early 1920s and oil profiteers tried to take the profits the tribe was getting by murdering anywhere from 20 to over a hundred Osage people.  Robert DeNiro and Leonardo DiCaprio will co-star, with DeNiro playing cattleman William Hale, who orchestrated many of the murders, while Leo will be an FBI agent investigating.
  • Dexter Fletcher directing a reboot of The Saint: The director of Rocketman has signed on to direct a reboot of The Saint.  The Saint was originally a series of novels and radio drama before becoming a Roger Moore TV series that became a classic Val Kilmer 90s action thriller from director Phillip Noyce.  The premise is that master thief Simon Templar uses his skills at deception and disguise to pull heists that target the corrupt and evil.  There was talk of a reboot starring Chris Pratt back in 2018 but it’s not clear if that is still the case or if Dexter Fletcher will start completely over from scratch.
  • Doc Savage TV series in development: Producer Neal H. Moritz, best known for the Fast & Furious franchise, is developing a Doc Savage TV series.  There had been a Shane Black/Dwayne Johnson movie version in development but that seems to have stalled out and this new TV project is a completely new take on the classic pulp hero.  In case you don’t know, Doc Savage is “a musician, inventor, physician, scientist, explorer, a master of disguise, and a detective who was also a genius, blessed with an eidetic memory, peak physical prowess, and had mastered martial arts”.  He battled basically every type of threat you could imagine and an entire army of support staff and sidekicks to help him.
  • Tiger Handhelds are coming back: Fondly remembered only by 90s kids (who will still admit they were kind of crappy), Hasbro announced they are bringing back a selection of Tiger Handheld LCD games that will be exclusively at GameStop.  Sonic the Hedgehog 3, The Little Mermaid, X-Men Project X and Transformers Generation 2 will be the four games available for $14.99.
  • Moviefone bankrupt, has only 1 employee: Speaking of the 90s, Moviefone ruled the pre-Internet movie times information business, letting customers call the hotline and hear local movie times from Mr. Moviefone.  The service is probably best known for a B plot on Seinfeld where Kramer realizes that his phone number is one digit off from Moviefone and starts giving people movie times himself.  The parent company of Moviefone was the same as MoviePass, which also collapsed recently.  There is apparently only 1 employee left at the company keeping the website running.

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